Bloke stunned to discover why Digestive biscuits got their name and others can’t believe they never knew
THERE are some things in life we just don't question – why is the sky blue? Why is the earth round? And how did Digestive biscuits get their name?
Comedian Gary Meikle is also one of these people – and until recently, he'd never stopped to consider the origin behind his favourite biscuits.
Earlier this week, Gary took part in the viral TikTok challenge where people are sharing things that are "totally normal" in their country – but seen as "weird" elsewhere.
The Glasgow-based comedian explained how his American girlfriend couldn't wrap her head around why the biscuits were called Digestives and urged him to examine the ingredients.
In a viral clip that has racked up over three million views, Gary said: "In Scotland, it's normal to eat biscuits called Digestives- I've never even thought about the name before.
"However, my American girlfriend has just informed me that that is not normal and she demanded to read the ingredients."
After a quick Google search, Gary was stunned to discover what the iconic biscuits had originally been designed for.
He claims: "It turns out in 1839 two Scottish doctors developed these to help with the aid of the digestive system because they've got sodium bicarbonate in them, which is a laxative.
"So, essentially we have been eating biscuits that help make us s**t.
"I feel violated. Why were we not taught this back in school during home economics? Like, am I the only Scottish person that didn't know this was a s**t biscuit?!"
Gary read the claim on the Digestive Biscuit Wikipedia page – but on their website, McVitie's explain how their first Digestive biscuit was developed in 1892 by baker Alexander Grant.
The history of the Digestive Biscuit:
- Digestive biscuits were invented in 1892 by Alexander Grant
- The secret recipe is still used today
- McVitie's allegedly settled on the name 'Digestive' as the biscuits contained sodium bicarbonate which can soothe an upset stomach
- The chocolate Digestive was released in 1925
However, dietician Catherine Brennan told Cooking Light that Digestives are unlikely to make you need the toilet – instead, the sodium bicarbonate could potentially help with heartburn.
She said: "Exactly how much bicarbonate these biscuits contain is a mystery."
After looking into the wholewheat recipe, dietician Maya Feller added: "This product would not be something I’d recommend as a digestive aid."
In the comments of Gary's video, one user wrote: "I've never even questioned why they were called digestives…"
Another added: "I will never look at a digestive the same again!"
Meanwhile, a third joked: "Guess who's still gonna eat them..!"
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